I didn’t think that this felt planting bag would work this well. But it was a great way to grow these 6+ foot tall sunflowers in the dog yard, keeping them safe from deer, squirrels and gophers.
Sunflowers are amazing! They follow the same Fibonacci pattern (math sequence) of almost everything in nature – as shown in this cool video. Growing nice big sunflowers is all fun and games… and they make great fall decorations. But keeping those sunflower heads safe from birds and mice until it’s time to hang them up is serious business. I’ve learned from experience to keep them inside, and up off the ground. First they hang in the garden shed where it’s warm and dry. When they are completely dry, I store them in paper bags hanging in a closet or the garage (using a wreath hanger over the cupboard door works great).
The first bowl of fresh picked green beans were delicious, along with zucchini and yellow summer squash harvested today. We have mulched with straw to conserve moisture and planted a few sunflowers in the safety of the raised bed. Surrounding the garden with poles and hanging bird netting has proven to be a excellent way to keep the deer from using the garden as their personal salad bar. Clothespins weigh down the netting and it’s easily flipped over the top to get in for weeding/watering, etc. The already 5+ foot sunflowers will provide filtered shade for half the day, which helps keep the lettuce from bolting. They are the ‘Kong’ variety… and we think they are going to be huge!
Every night at dusk, the buzzing begins. Dozens and dozens of junebugs ascend from their hiding spots. Up they go, bumping into everything as they fly higher and higher. One after another, they bounce with a ‘tink’ ‘tink’ against the rain gutters as they congregate somewhere above the roof. We wonder what they do up there in the dark… mating, maybe? They become ‘prey’ for the young owls that are learning how to hunt this time of year, and owl pellets have been found chock full of junebug wings. It’s always late June or early July when they show up, probably due to the mild summers here on the central coast of California. In the memories of my youth in the hot San Joaquin valley, they were seen hanging and hissing on the screen door.